When the gang at NBC’s “Saturday Night Live” returned from a two-week vacation, they weren’t lacking for material. After all, more than anyone else, the “Not Ready For Prime-Time Players” have taken to heart Michael Moore’s call to fight the Donald Trump administration with comedy. So you can imagine that Lorne Michaels and friends were wondering whom they should tee up. Trump being caught lying about his Electoral College margin? His railing about the media being the enemy of the American people? Attorney General Jeff Sessions being caught lying about meeting with Russian officials? And on, and on.
Ultimately, they decided to give the beleaguered Attorney General the full “SNL” treatment. And the result may go down as one of the classic skits in “SNL” history. Watch here.
For this latest effort, Kate McKinnon reprised her brief impersonation of Sessions during Melissa McCarthy’s second send-up of Sean Spicer two weeks ago. In a parody of the “Forrest Gump” bus stop scene, “Sessions” chatted with several strangers while on the run from scrutiny over his Russian ties.
We knew where this was going when he showed the first stranger, portrayed by Leslie Jones, a picture of his “best good friend” Kellyanne Conway merrily texting away while Trump was meeting with HBCU presidents–and remarked that Kellyanne “ain’t got no legs.” He then mused about how Conway had been gagged by the White House, even though she could “sell steak to a skunk.:”
“Sessions” then showed Kyle Mooney a picture of himself on the front page of The New York Times. As it turned out, it was a story covering him being busted for lying to the Senate in his confirmation hearing. “Sessions” mentioned that his week started out well, but went south after Trump’s speech. Apparently “Sessions” had his phone blow up with messages saying he was a liar and a con man. His lawyer’s advice? “Run, Jeffy, run!” He didn’t stop running until he got to the bus stop.
He then talked about his confirmation hearing. He claimed he’d gotten “nervous and confused” when a “Senator from up north”–Al Franken–asked him about his Russia ties. He denied it–but told the next stranger, played by Aidy Bryant, that he talked to the Kremlin after all. Specifically, with ambassador Sergey Kislyak–he remembered his name because it sounded like “gay kiss.” He wasn’t the only one–Michael Flynn, J. D. Gordon, Carter Page, Jared Kushner, and Paul Manafort talked with the Russians as well. Despite this, he was desperate to go back to Washington and clear his name.
Those plans hit a snag when Vladimir Putin, played by Beck Bennett, showed up. The two bumped fists in a “meeting that never happened.” The last passerby to show up was that week’s host, Octavia Spencer–in character as Minny from “The Help.” She had a gift for “Sessions”–a pie, baked just for him. “Sessions” devoured it merrily, despite wondering what was in it.
So far, no angry tweets from Sessions. Hmmm, perhaps he really is on the run.
To my mind, this performance definitely puts McKinnon in contention for an Emmy in 2018. She’ll deserve it.
(featured image: screenshot courtesy NBC via The Daily Beast)